It was good of my neighbour to wake me from that afternoon sleep. All that scraping, and some generator-type noise. I could think of better things to do at the closing of the day. The old sound from childhood, the rhythmical grating of sand against metal as someone mixes cement.

No, wait, the cement is already mixed. Someone is shovelling it from the pile on the ground into a wheelbarrow. What on earth does he need cement for? He finished refurbishing his house last year, didn’t he? Pity about the bright blue exterior paint,but hey, who am I to criticise someone’s desire for brightness in their life?

That old joke about getting a great discount at the paint shop, because no one else wants that colour springs to mind. With a giggle and a guffaw I lie there, fully awake now.

The gritty grey cement is slopping around in my mind. And the story my builder Dad used to tell of how his workers peed on the sand pile. The sugar in their pee weakened the cement. That’s what the building inspector said. My Dad had to re-do some section of foundation for a house because of that. He had to start all over again.

©2019 Allison Wright
[207 words]


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